When it comes to Christmas, I'm a huge fan of the decor and music…after Thanksgiving. I try to let each holiday have it's say. But I'm a sucker when it comes to an inspirational book. So when I had the chance to read Christmas from Heaven, I just couldn't hold out.
It tells the story of 27-year-old Gail "Hal" Halvorsen, a pilot in the US Army Air Corps who flew supplies into Soviet-blockaded Berlin in 1948. When Hal met the local children, he noticed something different about them. They didn't beg for candy or treats from the servicemen, but when Hal gave them chewing gum, they treasured the gift.
This inspired him to do more. He asked his crew to donate their rations of gum and chocolate to the local children. They fashioned parachutes from handkerchiefs to "bomb" the children with candy from Hal's plane. The excitement of giving was contagious. So much so that donations poured in and Hal became known as "The Candy Bomber."
I first learned about this story last year when Tom Brokaw read it live in a performance with the Mormon Tabernacle Choir. I started to cry as Lt. Halvorsen walked out and they dropped little bundles from the rafters. It's inspired me to do more myself. To seek out those who need lifted up. And even if what I give seems small to me, I want to make sure that the love behind it is huge.
I'm pretty sure my children will get candy "bombs" in their stockings this year.